appetite,  parenting

mom-meals: pulled chicken tacos

Tacos

The first few weeks of parenthood filled our trash can with almost as many takeout containers as dirty diapers. Now that we are getting back into cooking, I’m trying to make more meals that require as little active time (chopping, stirring, assembling) as possible. It’s been a gradual improvement from eating random things out of the fridge with one hand while holding Parker with the other arm to cooking pasta with him in the baby carrier, but I missed my old Sunday meal prep routine and the time it saved during the week. People have recommended Blue Apron as a way to make cooking easier. I think I’d feel more stressed/constrained by their ingredients lists, the 30+ minute prep time for meals, and the amount of packaging that the meals are shipped in. I prefer going to the store or farmer’s market and getting inspired by a few ingredients.

A fellow new mom recommended this pulled chicken recipe to me. She and her husband made it on a Sunday for enchiladas and had plenty for lunches throughout the week. After being limited to dinner-making via “hand baby to husband as soon as he gets home and then scramble to cook”, I was happy to bring out the crockpot, make the pulled chicken, and ponder a non-enchilada meal that didn’t require a knife and fork (since I’m aiming to cook meals that can be eaten while holding a baby in the other arm, if needed). Bonus mom activity: going for a walk to Stop and Shop with Parker.

Ingredients
1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast (used a 2 pound package from Stop and Shop)
1/2 cup salsa, homemade or store-bought (used mild Whole Foods salsa)
1 teaspoon garlic powder (used Penzeys Roasted Garlic and added a few cloves of minced garlic)
1/2 onion, finely chopped (used a whole onion)
2 teaspoons taco seasoning (used chipotle powder, salt, and black pepper)

Cooking
I did the chopping after Parker had gone to sleep, then put the ingredients into the crockpot on low for 8 hours. The crockpot switched to the “keep warm” setting for a couple of hours by the time we had finished Parker’s morning feeding. I pulled the chicken apart with two forks and then stored it in Tupperware until dinner that evening.

Eating
We didn’t actually use it in enchiladas, but in tacos (pictured above) and in salads (with the same filling, just with corn and more lettuce). At the store, I got inspired to make tacos after spotting mango salsa in the pre-chopped vegetables section. For the tacos, I used yellow corn tortillas, chopped avocado, mango salsa, cheddar cheese, green Tabasco sauce, and lettuce.

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